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Area Management Biologist
June 26, 2014
The Kenai River personal use dipnet fishery will open July 10 and continue through July 31. Retention of king salmon in the Kenai River personal use fishery will be prohibited in 2014. Any king salmon caught may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately unharmed.
Kenai River king salmon and other king salmon stocks throughout Cook Inlet are experiencing a period of low productivity and below average run strength since 2009. That trend has continued during 2014. The 2014 preseason forecast for late-run Kenai River king salmon is for a total run of approximately 19,700 fish. This is less than one-half of the 1986–2013 average total run of approximately 57,000 fish. Considering the small run forecast and direction provided in the Kenai River Late-Run King Salmon Management Plan, the department issued an emergency order prohibiting bait in the inriver sport fishery. Additionally, the management plan prohibits the retention of king salmon in the personal use fishery if bait is prohibited in the Kenai River sport fishery. The management plan also includes restrictions to commercial fishing.
Based on the preseason forecast, the 2014 sockeye salmon run to the Kenai River is expected to be near average. The personal use fishery will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. each day, from July 10 through July 31. A permit is required to participate; permits and regulations that apply to the fishery are available at local vendors and ADF&G offices.
For information on Kenai River king salmon visit our website at: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/sf/FishCounts/index.cfm?ADFG=main.home .